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'Nuclear Option' Vote Marks Tectonic Shift In Senate Rules

The real reason Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid changed the rules Thursday was the proliferation of the filibuster's use — and the near-total separation of the tactic from any real objections to the nominee being blocked.
NPR

Dow Jones Index Closes Above 16,000 For First Time

After gaining 109 points Thursday, the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 16,000 for the first time in history. The index touched the mark earlier this week but fell short by day's end.
NPR

Marking Kennedy Assassination, Dallas Still On 'Eggshells'

Dallas became known as the "City of Hate" after President John F. Kennedy was killed there. But the city has changed, and it hopes that the 50th anniversary of the assassination on Friday will be a chance to show the extent of that transformation.
NPR

Food Stamp Program Doesn't Guarantee Food Security, Study Finds

In a small study, Harvard researchers found that getting food stamps didn't help low-income individuals as much as they expected. Despite their food aid, researchers say the people they surveyed weren't getting a complete, nutritious diet.
NPR

Number Of Homeless Declines Again, But Gains Aren't Universal

Citing gains among veterans and the chronically homeless, a large government study reports continued progress. But nearly 20 percent of homeless people were in either New York City or Los Angeles, according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development. And several states also saw an increase.
NPR

ATF Chief Faces Tough Challenge At Troubled Agency

B. Todd Jones is in charge of a bureau whose relevance and performance are being questioned and whose resource problems appear to be growing larger. He's trying to put the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives back on solid footing after years of controversy and criticism.
NPR

Personhood In The Womb: A Constitutional Question

A study released this year examined cases where law enforcement intervened in the lives of pregnant women who were believed to be endangering their fetuses. State laws are stepping in on behalf of the fetuses' constitutional rights — but what of the mothers' rights? Fresh Air looks at three perspectives in the debate.
NPR

Women Pass Marine Training, Clear First Hurdle To Combat Role

For the first time, three women were among the Marines who graduated Thursday from the two-month combat training course. The U.S. lifted the ban on women in combat earlier this year. Now, the Marines are conducting tests to see if women have what it takes to actually serve in the infantry.
NPR

GOP Enraged After Filibuster Vote, But Does It Change Much?

Historian Gregory Koger says the Senate Democrats' vote for the "nuclear option" is a function of increasing frustration and that GOP retaliation may be largely limited to rhetoric rather than action.
NPR

Alabama Pardons Scottsboro Boys In 1931 Rape Case

The state's parole board approved Thursday a posthumous pardon in the 1931 rape involving the three black men who were not pardoned in the infamous case. Nine black men were falsely accused of raping two white women on a train. All but one got the death penalty. Five convictions were overturned, and a sixth accused was pardoned before his death in 1976.

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